Tomorrow is Fathers Day and there will be a host of related comments. Already seen a ton reflecting the modern belief that a father is not the guy who contributed the genetic material, etc. It is not something I agree with the way it is presented, and a lot of why I feel that way is because of my beliefs and experiences.
I am exceedingly thankful I was born to parents who believed the Word of God, who worked through differences instead of splitting over them, who in good times...and we had them...and bad times...had those too...provided as good of role models as I could ask for. Had I not had those I would be in prison or the grave right now.
People claiming to be much wiser than Mom and Dad would say Dad did not talk about his love enough. People wiser than those people would recognize the love he showed us every minute of every day in the way he treated Mom...friends...acquaintances...strangers...we children...I would say enemies, but that is part of who he is. There are people who considered him an enemy for speaking the truth but to my knowledge, in my formative years he called nobody enemy.
For decades I have heard him called stubborn, unbending, bull-headed...other things meant not to be complimentary. Thing is, he would always listen to things said by the people calling him those things, consider their arguments, and simply would not compromise. He could listen without agreeing, though when he found areas he could improve he did. Where he did not agree he would try to show them why. Meanwhile, the people calling him those things would seldom reciprocate. As with the words, his displays meant a whole lot more than their words.
Watching him deal with Mom all the years she had cancer...trying to care for her, keep us provided for, fulfill his duties as a preacher, be a comfort and support to her when needing it himself...I learned things I cannot express in words.
I honor and respect those who, in todays broken society of fly by night relationships, "committed relationships" that end for reasons I personally find lacking, faithless parents, I am thankful I grew up with a Father who fought through the challenges to be Father in genetics, responsibility, example, and teaching.
I was no easy child. The stubbornness I had was not offset by the gentleness that is a hallmark of his actions to those who actually take the time to get to know him. We had many battles of will and I am thankful he did not give up.
I hope someday to be half the man he is.I hope to learn to have within me and to show the love he has demonstrated all my born days. I hope to find the patience, the care for others, the willingness to forego my own needs that others might be helped he has always shown.
There are men out there who have been more financially successful. There are men out there who have become more famous. But there is not one person out there, in the past, present or future, I would rather have for my Father. I love you Dad and thank you for everything you have done. I feel that one not on Sunday, June 14th 2014 but on every day since I was cognizant of what the parent-child relationship was, is, and should be. Thank you for molding me, guiding me, supporting me, loving me and being the man you are.
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